Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Olney Chamber launches updated Web site

E-mail this article \ Print this article

The Olney Chamber of Commerce has updated its Web site, making it more interactive and user-friendly for both its members and the community, chamber officials say.

Chamber Executive Director Virginia Mauk said that while the content has basically remained the same, the new site should make navigating it easier.

‘‘The member search is more visible and easier to use, and it really highlights the upcoming events.” she said.

Businesses now have the options of updating their listings on their own, a task that was previously done in the chamber’s office. Eventually, they will be able to register for events and make payments on the Web site.

‘‘There’s still a lot of information on there about schools, religion and community groups, so it’s a great resource for the community,” Mauk said.

The new look was created by chamber member Brenda Egeland of Red Letter Design.

For more information, visit

No. 1 in our hearts

The news was out long before issued its recent list of Best Places to Live in the United States and listed Olney as No. 17.

Area residents and business people have long touted Olney as a great community.

The online list says Olney was named for its ‘‘small-town amenities among bits of history,” in addition to its easy access to Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

This year, looked at smaller places to live that offered the best economic opportunities, good schools, safe streets, things to do and a real sense of community.

Judging from the people who have called or e-mailed The Gazette to make sure we saw the list, people agree that Olney offers all of those.

Laytonsville manis new baton champion

The world of baton twirling has a new champion: Drew Abramson, 17, of Laytonsville.

Abramson, who teaches twirling and dance at the Shining Stars Performing Arts School in Damascus, is the new national men’s senior champion. He is also the senior champion in the doubles event, where he partnered with Mackenzie Snyder of Bowie. In the overall competition, where he competed against twirlers of both sexes, Abramson placed third.

Since May, Abramson has won the state, regional and national men’s titles. He has been twirling competitively for six years. Next week, he will compete on the U.S. team in the World Twirling Competition in Hamilton, Ontario.

Olney Skate Park to host skating competition

The Olney Skate Park will host the fifth annual Mid-Atlantic Skate Series (MASS) skating competition on Saturday.

The event, sponsored by Ledo Pizza, will feature bowl, street and Red Bull Manny Mania best-trick competitions. The entry fee is $20, plus skatepark entry fee.

Registration will start at 8 a.m. and continues all day. Participants may register anytime prior to their division’s scheduled event. Competition will begin at 9:30 a.m.

The skate park is located at Olney Manor Recreational Park, 16601 Georgia Ave. For more information and to find out the schedule of events for the day, go to

Museum to hosttwo local musicians

The Sandy Spring Museum will present the Friedman-Wysong Duo, two local chamber musicians, in concert at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 1 in the museum’s meeting room, 17900 Bentley Road.

The flute and guitar duo will perform works from classical to jazz, including works by Bach, Bizet, Villa-Lobos and Bolling.

Flutist Noreen Friedman, who lives in Olney, performs with the Olney Community and Rockville Concert bands and another group, Flutes on the Brink. She also has been involved with chamber music beyond the local area, and has participated in flute-guitar duos in Los Angeles and Atlanta, where she performed with the Brentwood-Westwood Symphony and Azalea Trio.

Bob Wysong, also a local resident, received his bachelor’s degree in classical guitar performance from Catholic University. Also an arranger and teacher, he has performed at receptions for the Washington Bach Consort and at the Mansion at Strathmore Hall. He has also performed ensemble music with the Potomac Trio, the Vivaldi Trio and The Joyful Sound folk group.

‘‘We hope the community will come out to this concert to enjoy an evening of music in the relaxed atmosphere of the museum’s meeting room,” said Henry Lieberman, the museum’s executive director. ‘‘This will also be a chance for us to hear and support musicians who are residents in the Olney-Sandy Spring area.

The concert is free.

For more information, call the museum at 301-774-0022.

If you have an interesting note about the people and the events of Olney, Brookeville, Sandy Spring and Ashton, send it to Judith Hruz, Editor, The Olney Gazette, 1200 Quince Orchard Blvd., Gaithersburg, Md. 20878; or e-mail it to me at Our fax numbers are 301-670-7182 or 301-670-7183. Deadline is 5 p.m. Thursday. Include a daytime phone number for clarification. All items subject to editing and space availability.